New Journal Article: ‘Strengthening Competition Law Enforcement in Ireland’

Dr Peter Whelan (CCP and UEA Law School) has had his article ‘Strengthening Competition Law Enforcement in Ireland: The Competition (Amendment) Act 2012‘ published in the latest issue of the Journal of European Competition Law & Practice. An abstract for Dr Whelan’s paper can be found below.


Ireland has increased the maximum custodial sentence that can be imposed on a convicted cartelist from 5 to 10 years, has increased the maximum fines for competition offences and has introduced Director Disqualification Orders for non-indictable competition offences.

The increase in the maximum custodial sentence in particular has some potential to perform a signalling function to trial judges in Ireland regarding the seriousness of cartel activity and the need for the imposition of custodial sentences on cartelists.

Recent experience in Ireland demonstrates that juries may be prepared to convict alleged individual cartelists, even when their doing so may result in the imposition of a custodial sentence.

By no longer requiring plaintiffs in follow-on private actions to prove a breach of competition law, Irish law has also facilitated less burdensome private competition law enforcement.

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